Fiji Island Banded Iguana
|[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note|
|This photo was taken during a family trip to the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.|
The Fiji banded iguana is an arboreal species of lizard endemic to the islands of Fiji and Tonga. It is one of the few species of iguanas found outside of the New World and one of the most geographically isolated members of the family Iguanidae. These iguanas are believed to have evolved from green iguanas that rafted on debris across 7,000 miles of Pacific Ocean from South America some 13 million years ago. Populations of these iguanas have been declining over the past century due to habitat destruction, and more significantly, the introduction of mongoose and house cats to the islands.
The species is diurnal, spending their days foraging, basking and watching over their territories by day and retreating to the treetops at night. Fiji iguanas are considered a national treasure by the government of Fiji, and its likeness has been featured on postage stamps, currency, and phone book covers.
Fiji banded iguanas are herbivorous, feeding on the leaves, fruit, and flowers of trees and shrubs, particularly hibiscus flowers of the Vau tree and fruit such as banana and papaya. Captive hatchlings have been observed eating insects; however, adults usually will not.
Relationship with humans - Threat
The biggest threats this iguana faces is habitat loss due to fires, storms, agricultural development, and competition from feral goats. A secondary threat is introduced predators in the forms of rats, mongoose, and cats which prey on the iguanas and their eggs. Additionally the iguana has been hunted as a food source and for the illegal exotic animal trade.
Indoor, Low Light, Handheld
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- [2009-06-08 10:42]
Excellent photo shoot and framing. Nice work
I like this photo. I think the colors of the animal and the contrast with the background and the branch where it sits, presented an excellent opportunity to achieve the depth you've given. Congratulations by the way he moved the focus towards the front of the reptile. This has given great importance to the picture and good visual impact.